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All Time Greatest Cheap Eats Washington

I am from Baltimore and want to check out what D.C. has to offer for fantastic food for $15.00 or less. I'm looking for amazing food, not huge portions or great deals. I say this because my top three picks in Baltimore are basically carry out type places and I cannot live without them.
In no particular order they are:

1.Faidley's for crabcakes
2.Attman's for corned beef
3.Andy Nelson's for Barbeque

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  1. My all-time top ten 'snacks' of the DC area:
    DC
    Rita's: (Trini) polori with pickled tamarind sauce, get the sorrel to drink
    Good Stuff Eatery: toasted marshmallow milkshake
    Pimento Grill: (Jamaican) Oxtail brown stew
    VA
    Taqueria El Charrito Caminante (Arlington), goat taco (horchata to drink)
    La Union Market (Arlington, Salvadoran) Veggie Enchilada (get the ensalada to drink)
    Cecilia's (Arlington, Bolivian): Saltena
    Fairfax Inn (Falls Church, Filipino): Daing Na Bangus - Marinated Milkfish
    MD
    Joe's Noodle House (Rockville): Shredded Radish - Sichuan
    China Bistro (Rockville): Any of the dumplings
    Max's (Wheaton) Felafel with toppings

    In direct comparison to your three favorites:
    DC
    Deli City - combo corned beef and pastrami
    Oohhs and Aahhs - broiled crabcake
    Breadline - bbq sandwich ordered on a ciabatta - Friday lunch only

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    Deli City Restaurant
    2200 Bladensburg Rd NE, Washington, DC 20018

    El Charrito Caminante
    2710 Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

    China Bistro
    755 Hungerford Dr, Rockville, MD

    Good Stuff Eatery
    303 Pennsylvania Ave SE, Washington, DC

    Joe's Noodle House
    1488 Rockville Pike Ste C, Rockville, MD 20852

    Fairfax Inn Restaurant
    2946 Sleepy Hollow Rd, Falls Church, VA 22044

    Pimento Grill Restaurant
    4405 Bowen Rd SE, Washington, DC 20019

    5 Replies
    1. re: Steve

      Cool list, can't wait to visit the DC area now for a week this fall!!

      1. re: Steve

        Max's felafel is world-class. Amazing food, huge portion, and great deal all rolled into one. Plus, the sandwich makers know to layer felafel balls and toppings. They are true artists. You might be tempted to order a second sandwich. NB: closed on Shabbat.

        This is one of the few food items about which I cannot help but wax rhapsodically.

        1. re: Bob W

          Ditto!! Max's felafel is amazing ... and the guys behind the counter are really kind to newbies who have never been there before. A huge felafel sandwich with zillions of toppings is a whopping $5.95. My husband raves about the shawarma--a whole one is $7.95. Wonderful place!

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          Max's Kosher Cafe
          2319 University Blvd West, Wheaton, MD 20902

          1. re: Bob W

            That is the true Israeli style: felafel shop workers in Israel really know how to put together the sandwich carefully so that all the ingredients have been distributed evenly and you get perfect bites throughout. It is quite an art.

            1. re: hamster

              But they also do good at inferring tastes. Give them a few to start with and they'll ask about others, or generalities - "you want spicy?"

        2. The original comment has been removed
          1. 1. 1/2 Pound Crabcake at Sullivan's Seafood. $11.
            2. Reuben at Deli City.
            3. Roast Beef at MGM Roast Beef in Brentwood.
            4. Smothered porkchops, collards, mac & cheese at Levi's Port Cafe.
            5. Steak & cheese, wings & mambo sauce, fries at Lucky Carryout on Pennsylvania Ave SE.

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            Deli City Restaurant
            2200 Bladensburg Rd NE, Washington, DC 20018

            2 Replies
            1. re: monkeyrotica

              How have I not known about Levi's? It looks fantastic, and I'm always lamenting DC's lack of decent bbq. Good tip!

              1. re: fisherdm

                I would actually pass on the barbecue: no smoke, and the sauce is far more sweet than vinegary. The pulled pork is just alright, but it's with the deep fryer that they excel, particularly the porkchops and chicken wings. The mac & cheese is a meal unto itself.

              1. re: DanielK

                Large falafel and fries at Amsterdam Falafel, with lots of garlic sauce and your favorite toppings from the topping bar.

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                Amsterdam Falafelshop
                2425 18th St NW, Washington, DC 20009

              2. Don't miss A&J in Rockville, not far from Joe's Noodle House. It calls itself "northern Chinese dim sum". They don't bring around a tea cart, instead you circle the items you want on the menu. Everything is scrumptious. Highlights: pork dumplings, pickled cucumbers, noodle soups.

                2 Replies
                1. re: csdiego

                  Tip about A & J: ask them for the wide noodles. You'll get the fresh, handmade noodles. This is a symbol (for ‘big’) you can use if you mark your menu: 大

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                  A & J Restaurant
                  1319 Rockville Pike C, Rockville, MD

                  1. re: Steve

                    Yeah! I tried the wide noodles for the first time a couple of weeks ago. Serious yum.